Pageant Key List Sourcetree

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You may also consider using PuTTY by pointing GITSSH to plink.exe and handle your ssh keys with Pageant. In this case you should include your login name in urls. You must also connect to an unknown host once from the command line and confirm the host key, before you can use it from git-gui. Changes since Git-1.5.3-preview20071027 New Features. See full list on Sourcetree comes with an SSH authentication agent called Pageant. Load your private key into Pageant to automatically authenticate so that you don't need to enter your passphrase. Double-click the Pageant (PuTTY Authentication Agent) icon in your system tray to open the Pageant Key List dialog. Click the Add Key button. Since I already had Pageant installed and a.ppk private key created, I only had to make Git use Pageant, by creating the GITSSH Windows environment variable and setting it to the path of the 'plink.exe' file (inside the PuTTY installation, for example C: Program Files (x86) PuTTY plink.exe). With that done, I just need to open Pageant and add.

Pageant Key List Sourcetree



You have seen in previous tutorials how to use PuTTY to connect to your VPS securely and how to create SSH keys with PuTTYgen.

You might have more than one SSH key for a single cloud server, or simply more than one cloud server or Droplet that requires SSH keys to log into. This can make you feel overwhelmed with having to manage, sort out, and link all those keys to their respective servers. That’s why Pageant exists.

Pageant is a PuTTY authentication agent. It holds your private keys in memory so that you can use them whenever you are connecting to a server. It eliminates the need to:

  • Explicitly specify the relevant key to each Linux user account, if you use more than one account to log into a server
  • Type a key’s passphrase each time you log into your user account; and your keys should be passphrase protected since having an unprotected key is as good as hiding your password under your keyboard!


Make sure you have these prerequisites.

  • Pageant is installed together with the PuTTY suite; if you don’t have it installed, you can download it here
  • You should already have at least one SSH key saved on your local computer

Step 1 — Adding Keys to Pageant

Start Pageant from the PuTTY folder: Start-Menu > All Programs > PuTTY > Pageant

Pageant starts by default minimized in the system tray. To begin adding your SSH keys, you should right click on its icon and then the following context menu will show up:

Clicking on Add Key from the menu or View Keys to open up the Pageant Key List window. Here you can view, add, and remove keys:

Tip: You can access the Pageant Key List window directly by double-clicking its icon in the system tray.

Click the Add Key button. This will open the file explorer, where you can choose one or more keys at a time to load. You should select files with the .ppk extension:

Click the Open button to load the keys with Pageant.

If a key is passphrase-protected, you will be prompted to enter the passphrase only once before it can be added to the Pageant Key List:

After successfully adding a key, you can now see it listed:

Step 2 — Connecting to the Server(s)

Now these keys will be available while connecting to any server during your PuTTY sessions. You don’t have to take any extra steps in PuTTY. Just enter your hostname or IP address, and SSH user. PuTTY will automatically try to authenticate using any keys currently loaded in Pageant.

Step 3 (Optional) — Removing Keys from Pageant

If you want to remove a key from Pageant, select that key from the Pageant Key List window and press the Remove Key button. You can also remove multiple keys together by selecting them with CTRL or SHIFT.

Tips & Tricks

Use these tips to automate your authenticated connections with Pageant.

Loading Keys Automatically on Pageant Startup

You can make Pageant automatically load one or more private keys when it starts up, instead of adding them manually every time you start up Pageant.

Go to the Pageant shortcut icon from the Windows Start Menu or your desktop.

Right click on the icon, and click on Properties.

A new window will open containing the shortcut’s properties:

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From the Shortcut tab, edit the Target field. Leave the path to pageant.exe intact. After that path, add paths to your .ppk key files. These should be outside the quotation marks. Here’s an example:

Click the Apply and then OK buttons.

Note: If the keys are encrypted, Pageant will request the passphrases on startup.

Making Pageant Run PuTTY

You can make Pageant start PuTTY or any other program once it has initialized itself and loaded any keys specified on its command line. That way you can just start Pageant instead of having to start both programs.

You can achieve this by following the same steps we used previously to add the keys automatically (see the previous section). Just add the program’s path at the end of the command in the Target field, preceded by the -c option, and contained within double quotes. Here’s an example of the full line for the Target field:

Other PuTTY Suite Products

Here are a few other helpful applications that can work with PuTTY.

  • PuTTYgen: A tool to generate and edit SSH public and private key pairs. It is part of the PuTTY suite, but it can also operate with the private key formats used by some other SSH clients like WinSCP
  • PSFTP: An interactive text-based client for the SSH-based SFTP (secure file transfer) protocol, that allows you to run an interactive file transfer session and perform many thing like listing the contents of directories, browsing around the file system, issuing multiple get and put commands, etc.
  • PSCP (PuTTY Secure Copy Client): A tool for transferring files securely between computers using an SSH connection

After a recent laptop upgrade, I needed to reset my access to BitBucket from my new laptop, and figured this post might save some hassles for other folks trying to do the same.

Sticking with Windows for my OS when most other developers have moved to Mac might strike some readers as a strange thing: for me, it is a mixture of wanting the OS to be something I never think about (I care much more about the setup of my Chrome browser) as well as always being a bootstrapper (the equivalent Mac to my Samsung Ultrabook is another 30% more) means I’d rather stick with Windows (until I can really do without MS Office, at which point I’ll happily go Linux, but Google Docs isn’t there yet and being a CEO means a lot of spreadsheet and presentation work).

The problem, though, is being an outlier from a dev perspective means the instructions/process isn’t always so clear – now we know how Mac users have felt for 20 years!

SourceTree and PuttyGen/Pageant

When you’re using SourceTree you’ll probably be using it alongside the excellent Putty package (download it here; I recommend using the “Windows Installer” option half way down the page). When installed, this package includes a handful of utilities; the three we care about here are:

  • PuTTY: this is used for making SSH connections. You don’t actually need it for SourceTree things, but you’ll almost certainly need it for lots of other things.
  • Pageant: this is a background, resident app that handles the SSH handshake from your Windows apps, including SourceTree.
  • PuTTYgen: this is the key generation app for Windows which makes it easy to create public/private keys.

The process of getting SourceTree to work nicely with key based access is:

  1. Use PuTTYgen to create a public/private key pair. Save the private key to somewhere safe on your local machine.
  2. Select/copy the public key section (the bit in the top grey window of PuTTYgen when the key has been created) and paste it in as a new SSH key in your BitBucket Account page under SSH Keys (the URL will be something like
  3. Each time you boot your machine, fire up Pageant and “Load” your private key from step 1 – this will then “authenticate” your push, pull, fetch and other remote requests against BitBucket.

SourceTree’s Coolest Feature on Windows – the Terminal

However, if you’re like me, you’ll quickly tire of having to always use the SourceTree UI – it can be really slow and clunky (thanks Java). In this case, you’ll want to use the “Terminal” option in SourceTree.

Product Key List

When you click on the “Terminal” option, you get a fairly fully featured Linux-like terminal right there on your machine. This terminal makes it easy for you to do things like pulls, pushed, checking out other branches, changing the permissions on a file to make it executable – everything you want to do at the Git command line, and a lot more.

The problem with this Terminal, though, is that it doesn’t get the benefits of Pageant’s private key access – if you try and do a push or a pull or anything else that requires authentication to BitBucket, you’re going to get an access denied situation.

Enabling SSH Key access from the Terminal

Pageant Key List Sourcetree

As mentioned, the Terminal is more than just a command line interface for Git – it has a lot of built in Linux functionality there (I haven’t explored/dug in to work out how much). However, because it is running as an emulated environment within Windows, but not really as part of it, you need to set up your own keys.

The process is as follows:

  1. Fire up the terminal by clicking on the “Terminal” button in SourceTree. It doesn’t matter which repository you launch the terminal from since we’re going to be affecting your whole terminal environment.
  2. Type in ssh-keygen -t rsa -C ‘[email protected] (obviously replacing the email address with your own account).
  3. Accept the defaults, and enter a passphrase if you want to be prompted to enter one each time you use the key.
  4. You’ll then need to copy the public key (located at – right click and open it in Notepad) to your clipboard.
  5. Finally, you’ll need to paste the public key into your BitBucket Account page under SSH Keys (the URL will be something like

Pageant Key List Sourcetree 2020

Once you’ve done this, you’ll be able to run “git pull” and “git push” in your Terminal and interact with the BitBucket server.